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Do you want to increase your quality of life your quality of life? Do you want to create a home with meet your needs in light of your disability? I strongly recommend the use of smart home technologies. Using integrated technology like Amazon Alexa and Google home assistant you can increase your home’s functionality a little bit of the time starting with what you need first. The Internet and modern technology alleviate the need to purchase one expensive device to perform a task.

Amazon Alexa

The Alexa application can be used to control the lights, the TV, and other applications as well as set alarms. It can also be used to read headlines from new sources such as CNN Reuters and Fox. The technology has opened up a whole new world for an individual who could not read books or newspapers by themselves.  The Amazon echo can also be used to perform Internet searches without using one’s hands. When I performed my initial research for this post I did so use my Alexa for fire TV. The device can also be used for shopping and setting reminders.

Amazon Alexa

My Setup With Amazon Alexa and Google Home Assistant

The lights in the house can be controlled with simple devices like Amazon Alexa and Google Home Assistant. The technology isn’t perfect but it represents a great start and will provide benefits and comfort to individuals with disabilities. I have the good fortune to live in a home in southern New Jersey that is wheelchair accessible. It has a flat entranceway in the front of the house. My back porch as a wooden ramp which permits me to exit off the back porch from double doors leading out of the house. It has wider doorways so my motorized wheelchair can drive through. The doorway to my bedroom is 36 inches. My bathroom contains a roll in shower and accessible sink.

There is one thing I would change about my house I cannot open and close the front door by myself, unfortunately, I am very dependent upon others to get in and out of the house. I would prefer to have a door with an electronic time in a combination lock. At this time the items are beyond my budget.

Ideal World

In my ideal world, my home would function as a part of my care as crazy as it sounds Jensen’s cartoons where technology showers George dresses him and brushes his teeth. The August Smart Lock can be used to grant equal access to your home at certain times of the day such as home health aide. An individual smartphone can be used as a key. If you don’t want the person coming over anymore you can simply remove their access. The device also keeps track of who arrives and when. It provides more safety than a keypad with a combination.

If you have a falling out with a former home health aide you can restrict your access simply by removing them. This is a cost-effective item because it sells on Amazon for $181.24. This item is definitely cost-effective and could be purchased with the proceeds from my Social Security disability check.

Other Devices

Other wonderful devices include the ring doorbell which allows you to see the person at the door through the smartphone application. You can decide whether or not to answer the door. There also smart thermostats which allow you to control the temperature of your house.

One drawback I see with respect to these devices is that they are all Internet-based. If your Internet connection is unreliable, the devices will not function. I frequently had to reset my router to ensure that my Internet-based devices actually work. Fortunately, this is usually a simple process of restarting the router which I do by simply unplugging it or by calling my Internet provider on the phone. I do not presently possess a smart door lock a ring doorbell or a smart thermostat. My mother has to help me with resetting the thermostat or to see who is actually at the door. I believe that these devices would greatly enhance our personal freedom.

While my Jetsons fantasy of devices that provide me with attendant care is still far-fetched smart home devices are not and can provide a great deal of personal independence. I strongly urge you to try them because many of them are more cost-effective than I thought at first. If you know other technologies that work for you, please leave it as a comment below.

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